What is Hacking and how is it performed? How to prevent hacking?

Today almost everyone is dependent on computers and smartphones for their professional work and daily tasks. But not many know to save their privacy on digital devices, which is the reason hacking is popularly growing.

If you are an avid computer user, the term hacking might be familiar to you. In this post, we would discuss hacking in detail, its history, how it is performed, and how to prevent hacking from happening to your device.

What is Hacking?

Hacking is the process of infiltrating any digital device or network by identifying and exploiting the weakness in them. It is usually performed to get confidential information or data from the attacked machine. Sometimes security officials legally perform hacking for different purposes like unlocking criminals' phones and more.

Many users become victims of hacking when their social accounts get hacked and illicitly used by hackers. In the world, hacking is mainly performed to infiltrate someone's social accounts for stealing confidential information and using them to fulfill malicious purposes.

Traditionally, hacking is performed by a skilled computer programmer known as Hacker. However, hacking can also be performed even by non-technical users through advanced hacking tools in modern times.

History of Hacking

The history of hacking goes back to 142 years back. Yes, you read that right. However, obviously, it was not conducted on computers as they were not invented at that time. The first hacking was conducted on telephones when a group of young boys was professionally hired for intercepting the phone call to misdirect or disconnect them.

For computers, the first group of hackers came into existence in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In fact, UNIX is known as one of the first hacks ever created in 1969. In earlier times, hacking was commonly used for practical jokes and in a light way. However, in the 1980s, it gradually raised to become a serious business and started causing trouble.

Today, hacking is one of the common cybercrimes and causes of loss of billions of dollars to big organizations around the world. Almost every organization, whether it belongs to the computer field or not, is affected by hacking.

How is Hacking performed?

Since it is mostly technical, hacking is generally performed by highly skilled programmers or computer engineers. However, cybercriminals can also conduct hacking by psychologically tricking the victims into providing sensitive information, downloading malicious programs, or clicking infected links. Such a type of psychological hacking is also known as a Social Engineering attack. Today, cybercriminals use advanced tools and different types of malware to hack into computers and networks. Here are the top malicious tools or malware programs used for hacking −

  • Browser Hijackers

  • Phishing Pages

  • Botnets

  • Trojans

  • Worms

  • Rootkits

  • DDoS Attacks

  • Ransomware

  • Web Scripting Virus

  • Spyware

  • Keyloggers

How to prevent Hacking?

Hacking is one of the most widespread crimes conducted by cyber attackers. It can be pretty dangerous for your privacy and can cause much significant loss, including monetary. It is better to prevent them from happening to your devices or network. Here are a few preventive tips −

  • Always keep your software programs and OS updated with the latest version. Hackers always look for the security loopholes in the applications and OS to exploit them and use them to their advantage. Regularly updating would ensure that all security vulnerabilities are fixed.

  • Choose a unique and robust password while making social accounts. Also, choose strong security questions that nobody can guess. It is also advised to create different passwords for different accounts.

  • Set multi-factor authentication on all your accounts and devices. This will ensure that even if your login credentials get into the hands of hackers, they won't be able to access your account.

  • Download applications from the official sources only. Never go for the third-party unrecognized sources for getting software programs or games for a free or discounted price.

  • Keep a robust security program on your system. Security programs are specially designed to block malicious applications from entering your system.

Updated on: 12-Jul-2021


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